Each person in the U.S. makes about 4 pounds of garbage per day! And that number increases at Christmas when we eat and drink more and spend more money on cards and gifts! Here’s some tips on lowering your impact on the environment without missing out on any of the holiday cheer!
- Buy presents that will last – flimsy gifts that break after a week will end up in a landfill.
- Give gifts that use rechargeable batteries.
- Buy gifts that are made from recycled materials.
- Wrap your gifts in recycled and recyclable wrapping paper or use newspaper – or nothing at all!
- Gift cards make for environmentally friendly gifts.
- Check to see if your city or town has a program that lets you recycle your tree after Christmas.
- Or, buy a tree with roots that you can plant in your yard after Christmas.
- A fake tree may or may not be a better alternative to a real, cut Christmas tree – check the label to make sure it’s not made with any chemicals or in poor labor conditions, and that it will actually last you for years and years.
- Buy decorations that will last for years as well.
- Make your own decorations for the tree out of scrap materials or even edible goodies!
- Avoid buying food and drinks that are wrapped in excess packaging.
- Buy bulk.
- Get reusable cloth bags to take to the store with you.
- If you’re traveling home (or away) for the holidays, organize a car pool if possible to reduce the number of cars on the road.
- Send fewer Christmas cards out this year to reduce the amount of paper cards being made and to reduce the amount of transport required to get all those mailed cards to the right places.
- Of course, we’re lucky to have the option of e-mailing cards out to save waste!
- If you do like giving out paper cards, make sure the ones you buy are made of recycled material.
- Make your own cards from recycled materials!
- Save the nicer cards you get (and recycle the ugly ones, of course) to use for making your own cards next year!
Have Your Say
How are you eco-friendly during the holidays? Let us know!